While Mark is in Begas, attempting to use his big brain to make money, you people are at my mercy!!1! Let us begin!
Check out today’s Times for a book review of A. J. Jacob’s The Year of Living Biblically, One Man’s Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible, the story of a secular Jew who attempts to incorporate rules from the good book into modern life:
…”If I wanted to understand my forefathers, this year would let me live like they did, but with less leprosy,” he writes, sounding like Woody Allen on a bad day. So he made a list of scriptural strictures, the more peculiar the better, and set out to fulfill them as a 21st century New Yorker. This mission is exotic to him, he acknowledges, pointing out, “I’ve rarely said the word Lord, unless it’s followed by of the Rings.”
With that mea culpa for any seriously religious readers, Mr. Jacobs goes about creating a methodology. He acknowledges having obsessive-compulsive disorder and loves the idea of following rules. Seventy-two pages later he has typed out every instruction he can find in the Old and New Testaments and set up a month-by-month plan to try them out…
Other trips, notably to the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Ky., and to Jerry Falwell’s church in Lynchburg, Va., carry Mr. Jacobs beyond his own secular Jewish outlook and engage him in difficult theological questions, however briefly. “In fact, you have to be quite sharp to be a leading creationist,” he writes, after grilling one such scientist about Noah’s Ark.
Ha! A lukewarm review, but probably worth a read!